Audio and video recently recovered and released by Rolling Stone magazine show state senator and Republican gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano praying for federal leaders to “stand up” on January 6, 2021 and “discount” the Pennsylvania election.
The recording was provided to Rolling Stone by Bruce Wilson, a researcher who studies the influence of the New Apostolic Restoration movement, a conservative religious ideology.
The footage comes from an online conference hosted by NAR chief Jim Garlow, held, according to Rolling Stone, about a week before the January 6 attack on the US Capitol by supporters of the former President Donald Trump. Footage of Garlow’s pro-Trump conference was deleted after the Jan. 6 incident, according to Wilson and Rolling Stone.
The recording shows Mastriano offering a prayer at the NAR conference in which he prays for federal leaders to “stand up boldly” on January 6 and asks God to “bless these letters that President Trump has asked me to this morning to send to Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy describing the fraud in Pennsylvania.
Mastriano prays that the letters encourage federal leaders to “stand firm and ignore what happened in Pennsylvania until we have an investigation,” referring to the state’s election results.
Mastriano did indeed send letters — co-signed by several other Republican state lawmakers — to McConnell and McCarthy on Dec. 31, 2020 calling on GOP congressional leaders to reject Pennsylvania Electoral College results, citing a number of alleged fraud evidence, most of which had already been demystified.
Garlow and some other NAR adherents are often described as Christian nationalists, a movement that views the United States as an inherently Christian nation in which the beliefs and morals of Christians should have political power over those of others.
Mastriano sought to distance himself from the NAR and Christian nationalist movements, despite his frequent appearances with their adherents.
Mastriano chartered buses to take Trump supporters to Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021, and walked the Capitol grounds himself, though he maintains he did not enter the building during the headquarters.
The subsequent congressional committee investigation revealed that Trump viewed Mastriano as a key ally in his plans to stay in power even after losing the 2020 election. Mastriano personally lobbied the US Department of Justice to endorses false allegations of voter fraud as part of Trump’s effort to invalidate the election results, according to committee documents.
Mastriano is suing the U.S. House committee investigating the January 6 attacks, alleging it lacks the power to impeach him. Last month, Mastriano cut short his interview with the committee after saying he had been told he would not be allowed to do his own recording.